An assault is an act by which the defendant intentionally or recklessly causes the complainant to apprehend immediate, or to sustain, unlawful personal violence. The jury ought to be directed that the defendant cannot be guilty of an assault unless the prosecution proves that he acted with the mental element necessary to constitute his action on assault, that is that the defendant intentionally or recklessly applied force to the person of another.
 3 All ER 788,  1 QB 421,  EWCA Crim 4
England and Wales
Cited – Regina v Scarlett CACD 18-May-1993
The force used by the defendant in self defence was justified even though there was a mistake as to the extent to which force was required. ‘If the mental element necessary to prove an assault is an intention to apply unlawful force to the victim, . .
Cited – Director of Public Prosecutions v Armstrong-Braun Admn 5-Oct-1998
A building site was subject to a requirement to move great crested newts before work could proceed. The defendant, a local councillor interfered to prevent a digger destroying the land until the newts had been moved. He appealed his conviction for . .
Cited – Regina v Kimber CACD 1983
For mens rea, it is the defendant’s belief, not the grounds on which it is based, which goes to negative the intent. The guilty state of mind was the intent to use personal violence to a woman without her consent. If the defendant did not so intend, . .
Cited – Regina v K HL 25-Jul-2001
In a prosecution for an offence of indecent assault on a girl under 16 under the section, it was necessary for the prosecution to prove the absence of a positive belief in the defendant’s mind that the victim was 16 or over. The legislation history . .
Cited – Regina v Spratt CACD 2-Jan-1990
The defendant fired his air gun from a window hitting a six year old girl. He admitted a section 47 assault on the basis that he had been unaware of her presence, and had given no thought to any risk.
Held: Failure to give any thought to a . .
Cited – Director of Public Prosecutions v Majewski HL 1976
The defendant took a cocktail of drink and drugs and, whilst intoxicated, assaulted pub landlord. He said that he did not know what he was doing, and had no mens rea, that self-induced intoxication could be a defence to a charge of assault, and that . .
These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 27 February 2021; Ref: scu.249934